In December 2016, in an international conference entitled “50 years of Greek Television” that took place in Thessaloniki, organized by the Laboratory of Cultural and Visual Studies of the Department of Journalism and Mass Media Communication, both well-established and emerging scholars came together to discuss the past, present, and future of (the academic study of) Greek television. The conference delivered a wide array of arguments in favor of a fresh and unapologetic – yet rigorous – approach to the study of the popular medium, as well as its content, production conditions, technological transformations, historical and socio-political parameters, and impact on Greek society. With this rejuvenated interest in the study of Greek television as an overarching guideline, this special issue of Filmicon: Journal of Greek Film Studies aspires to introduce the theme of Greek Television Studies, with a particular focus on the study of television fiction made and seen within the Greek context.
Ever since its emergence as part of the British cultural studies during the 1970s, television studies have charted a progressive yet certainly complicated course. From a neglected cousin, television studies have succeeded in becoming independent from film and media studies, to the point that they have now come to be considered an ‘established field’ with its own degrees and courses at different Anglophone universities. Furthermore, thanks to its disciplinary hybridity, the study of television in countries like the UK and the USA has attracted extensive scholarly attention from a variety of disciplines, particularly the humanities and social sciences, thus resulting in an exponentially rich body of monographs and articles that read and decode – among other formats – the polysemy of television shows and series.
The academic study of Greek television, however, has a limited place in the national and international bibliography. Previous studies have adopted mainly autobiographic, historical and sociological approaches in an attempt to capture ‘the big picture’ of Greek television and chronicle the evolution of the medium, as well its impact on viewers across different time periods and cultural moments. It can be argued that with the exception of television critics and relatively recent academic interventions in collective volumes and articles, such as Kaklamanidou (2017), Vamvakas & Paschalidis (2018), and Aitaki (2015, 2017, 2018), the discussion around Greek fiction still remains in its infancy. This lack of systematic engagement with the area of television fiction, combined with the closure of the MEGA channel, signifies a need to discuss and reconsider Greek television’s traditionally ‘unserious’ cultural archive, especially within the context of commercially oriented television.
This special issue wishes to create a space for reflections upon Greek television fiction produced so far since the deregulation of Greek television and the emergence of private channels in 1989. We thus ask that all contributions – whether historical approaches, case studies or comparative analyses – engage with the Greek televisual content and create new pathways to read, understand and explore the academic field of Greek television studies.
The scope of the special issue may include (but is not restricted to) the following themes revolving around Greek TV fiction:
- Textual and contextual analysis of case studies
- Genres and sub-genres
- Representation of gender, sexuality, body image, ethnicity and/or disability
- ‘Identity politics’ and intersectionality
- Production, reception and consumption
- Book-to-TV adaptations
- Television series and audiences
- Television fiction and fandom
- Television fiction in the Internet age
- Convergence culture
- Programming strategies and reruns
- The case of MEGA channel
Authors should submit a 300-word abstract for their papers including a title, aim and brief background, sources of data & method, and potential arguments/results if already known by 20 January 2019. Proposals, along with authors’ contact information and a short bio of maximum 100 words should be submitted via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. The editors will make a decision and will contact authors by 1 February 2019.
The deadline for article submissions is 30 June 2019, while the special issue is expected to appear in December 2019. All submissions should be in the range of 5,000-8,000 words, written in English, and prepared for an anonymous peer review process. Please note that prospective articles should not have been previously published or should not currently be under consideration for publication elsewhere.
Any queries should be addressed to the editors of the special issue Georgia Aitaki and Spyridon Chairetis at: email@example.com
A few words about the special issue editors:
Georgia Aitaki works as a research associate for the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication at the University of Gothenburg. Her doctoral dissertation entitled The private life of a nation in crisis: A study on the politics in/of Greek television fiction offers in-depth studies of the fictional reconstruction and negotiation of moments of heightened societal tension in Greek television fiction since 1989 (University of Gothenburg, 2018). Her research interests revolve around television fiction, television criticism, the production culture of commercial television, as well as the relationship between Greek media and society. Her work has been published in journals such asMedia, Culture & Society, Critical Studies in Television, and Social Semiotics.
Spyridon Chairetis is a DPhil/ PhD candidate in Modern Languages and Cultural Studies at the University of Oxford. His doctoral thesis examines queer potentialities and ambivalences in Greek TV comedy texts produced in the 1990s and 2000s. He holds a BA in English literature, University of Athens and has studied Contemporary European Politics (University of Bath, UK & Universidad Carlos III de Madrid) and Creative Writing (University of W. Macedonia, Greece) at Master’s level. He serves as gender/sexuality editor of E-International Relations and his work has been published in journals and blogs, includingFilmicon: Journal of Greek Film Studies, Social Anthropology, and Oxford Queer Studies Network.